What is Small Business Saturday?
Small Business Saturday was launched by the credit card company, American Express, on November 20, 2010 to support independently owned, local businesses. It encourages shoppers to shop local for the day. Fun fact: there are over 1,500 times more small businesses than large businesses in the United States. They really are the backbone for our economy, and American Express made this day to help bring awareness to that and support them.
Why it’s important for you to help
The COVID-19 outbreak has shown everyone just how important small businesses are in our country. This is why Small Business Saturday is important. There is a chance to greatly help many businesses that are still struggling coming out of the pandemic. Small Business Saturday not only impacts the vendors, but it impacts local shoppers as well. Every dollar spent at an independent retailer returns three times more money to the local economy than shopping at a chain store. In fact, less than 14% of money spent at chain stores remains locally circulated. Participating in Small Business Saturday not only helps the business owners, who could be your neighbor or friend, but it also helps to keep money contributing to the community you love.
How you can help
Finding the businesses: it is easy to do a quick Google search to find small businesses that you may not be aware of. There could be small businesses that you pass by every day and have never noticed. Another great resource is Merchant Maps from American Express. This is an interactive map that highlights local businesses in your area.
Go local for services: goods are often mass-produced by big retailers for a low cost, so it is understandably more difficult to shop local for goods if you are on a budget. However, services are often the same price or cheaper when you shop locally. For example, if you’re having issues with your car it might be best to take it to the local mechanic first before sending it to the car dealership.
Online engagement: supporting your favorite small business online is little work for you but could have a huge impact on the business. An easy thing to do is leave a quick review for a business. This would give them a better rating and drive more customers their way. Word of mouth and social media are also big. Sharing a post on social media with a product you love from a local business is a great way to get the word out to a large number of people at once.